September 8, 2007 7:26 PM
What does seem to mean something is who is leading in the national polls at the time of the Ames straw poll.
1979 - George Bush won the Straw poll with 36% of the vote, John Connolly and Bob Dole were 2nd, with 15% each. Ronald Reagan led in the Gallup poll, 29% to Jerry Ford's 21%. Reagan was nominated.
1987 - Pat Robertson won the Straw poll with 34%, Bob Dole was 2nd with 25%, George Bush was 3rd with 23%. Bush led in the Gallup, with 40% to Dole's 20%. Bush was nominated.
1995 - Bob Dole tied with Phil Gramm for 1st place in the Straw poll with 24%, and Pat Buchanan was 3rd with 18%. Dole led in the Gallup, with 31% to Gramm's 8%. Dole was nominated.
1999 - George W. Bush won the Straw poll with 31%, Steve Forbes was 2nd with 21%. Bush led in the Gallup with 61%. Bush was nominated.
2007 - Mitt Romney won the Straw poll with 32%, Mike Huckabee finished 2nd with 18%. Rudy Giuliani was leading in the Gallup, with 30%, followed by Fred Thompson at 19%. [?] was nominated.
By the way, only 14,306 folks showed up for the most recent Straw poll.